Somewhere between women burning their bras to now has seen the role of ‘wife’ become quite confusing. The stay at home world of a Superwoman is not quite as simple as staying at home anymore it seems. There is this ‘busy’ complex that creates a competitive dynamic between households of who holds the most out of house curriculum activities, while still maintaining the facade of a display like home, well-manicured nails, a perfect relationship and gifted children (none of which I can lay claim to). If it’s not a week of afternoon kids activities to taxi through or personal gym sessions so your body is socially acceptable, well then it’s overnight personal development courses to fix the problem you have with your image in the first place, hot date nights to secure the picture of your ‘perfect’ relationship or a destination wedding you can’t afford to attend.
Spare minutes seem few and far between and if there are short spurts of time that become available then they are quickly rescheduled into coffee and play dates, spring cleans before the in-laws visit and online shopping to fill your house with more ‘things’ you don’t even need. I am a perpetrator of this ‘busy’ fixation. I fill up my days with anything I can to keep busy (and possibly so I can ignore the ceiling high ironing pile I have that would put the Leaning Tower of Pisa to shame).
It was only a few months ago when something made me discover my ‘I’m so busy’ fascination. It was a Thursday. Windy, slightly fresh but really just a typical day here in G-Town. Thursdays had become ‘daycare’ day for my Mr3 and it was time to pick him up. After signing him out I helped him into the car while at the same time zipping his daycare bag up, buckling his baby brother in and talking on the phone to my Dad to organise a lift for my older sons soccer training. I had so many places to be that afternoon – picking up Mr3 by 3:30 (tick), dropping Mr9 at soccer at 3:45 and Mr12 at basketball at 4:15. Then picking up Mr9 at 4:45, Mr12 at 5:00 and Miss15, from her after school job at 5:15. I may have a split personality and even be two-faced at times but I haven’t developed the superpower of multiplying myself … Well not yet, that’ll come after I’ve developed the amazing mosquito who sucks fat! https://superwomanseven.com/2013/11/05/why-cant-mosquitos-suck-fat/
In my defence for what is about to follow please note that his menagerie of tasks were preceded by the morning school run, a full day of shopping (not for leisure), the afternoon school pick-up (x3) and the after-school-job drop-off…. But back to the story …. I am juggling zipping up the bag and buckling the seatbelts of my precious cargo while also over-thinking all the tasks set before me. I frantically ask my Dad “Can you take Ari to soccer?” Yes, he says, he’s on his way to Lawn Bowls anyway. “Great! He has to be at bowls by 4.” He has to be a bowls? Dad chuckles “No, no I mean soccer!” I’m clearly losing focus at this point but if you had of asked me I would have said that I had this balancing act shit sorted! Then all of a sudden it hits me! My mobile is missing! It’s like having a mini tornado rip through your chest cavity when you suddenly become aware your little technology buddy has disappeared. It is, after all, your life line. It holds all your phone numbers (so you never have to remember any number again including your own), all of your “contacts” details (some of whom you are actually friends with), hell it even holds evidence (via text message) that you told your husband four months ago that you’ve planned a trip away with the girls next month! So I start searching! Parked up in the daycare carpark, on show for everyone to see. I’m searching like a mad woman possessed by a dead man on Viagra! I’m checking the daycare bag, the centre console, my pockets, in the exhuast, everywhere. A few minutes linger and I twig……….. I am totally wasting my Dads time! I need to concentrate damn it! This shit is important! It’s a distorted exchange of words (on my part), I’m not making any sense at all and my mind is evidently not on the conversation at hand. So I say “Sorry Dad I gotta go – I can’t find my phone.” No worries, he says. We hang up………….. It’s then and only then that I finally become conscious! There resting in my hand after being surgically removed from my ear is that beloved little device … Yep the ‘missing’ phone! DOH!! It’s kinda like the I-can’t-find-my-sunnies-oh-they’re-on-my-head trick – which I had also done earlier that day.
This was THE golden moment! The moment I discovered that this was my life’s definition of busy. I was doing too much of everything while totally over-thinking it all. It meant nothing was getting done properly, no genuine love and attention was on offer and I was ripping off everyone involved in my busy life including myself. I wasn’t really listening to my son tell me about his day, I hadn’t nurtured my baby who had been stuck in the car for hours and my Dad, who was doing me a favour, didn’t even get a thank you!
I had to admit at that point that being busy had become an addiction. There’s a little part of me that wanted (and still wants) every day filled with stuff so I can avoid the ‘other’ stuff – like ironing or on a deeper level, being present. But I also know that the curriculum I’ve set myself is profoundly fulfilling – when completed right. It fulfils all the different variables of “me” that I am passionate about. Whether it’s my stylist business and love of colours to my volunteer work and love of contribution or to my blog writings that are a release of stale energy which clears me. But what I need to learn is how to make this work for me so my success is more gratifying. I need to organise myself so that I am only doing one at a time so I can do that one thing well. Is there any Superwoman (or Superman) who has this mastered, or are at least almost there? Who has this balance of life, children, career and passions fully sorted? And are you willing to share any hot tips to get this Superwoman into a better state of wife/mother/career life?? Who has an app for this?!